welcome to nhk world "newsline." i'm gene otani in tokyo. here is a look at some of the stories we're following this hour. israeli air strikes on gaza have killed more than 200 people and now the military warns residents there to evacuate. crews from a chinese oil rig say they're finished drilling near the disputed islands in the
south china sae. israeli military officials have warned people in border areas of the gaza strip to leave their homes. they have resumed air strikes after the palestinian islamist group hamas rejected a cease fire plan proposed by egypt. the israeli military on wednesday targeted the homes of top hamas leaders in central gaza. more than 200 people have been killed over the past week and more than 1,500 have been wounded. israeli military officials say they sent out a warning to residents in the northern and eastern parts of gaza. they told people to evacuate their homes by wednesday morning for safety. there have been no reports of massive attacks in those areas. united nations officials say more than 17,000 gas see residents have taken shelter inside schools.
in a surprise announcement wednesday, china said an oil rig set up in disputdisputed waterse south china sea is finished. >> reporter: relations have been worsening since china moved the equipment into the area in may. vietnam television aired a program that showed a correspondent on board a maritime police vessel reporting the latest development. the waters in question are near the islands rich in natural resources. china set up the oil rig in may in the disputed waters, since then clashes between ships from the two countries have erupted
one after another. relations have plunged to one of their lowest levels since the vietnamese war of 1979. the united states criticized china's move calling it provocative. but on wednesday, china's state run news agency suddenly reported that the oil rig finished it's work one day earlier. an executive of the vietnamese maritime police told nhk that the oil rig is being moved toward the chinese island of hainan. china's maritime safety administration had earlier said the drilling would conclude on august 15. about a month from now. a spokesperson for the chinese foreign ministry said on monday that companies concerned will map out work plans for the next step based on analysis and assessment of the geological data that was collected. the spokesperson responded to questions in a letter from nhk by condemning china. he said that vietnam demands china never begin bring drilling
rigs to waters belonging to vietnam. new guinea's economy has been growing steadily due to a wealth of mineral resources. the country is making headlines for another reason. violence against women. >> reporter: there was a stranger there who started hitting me and started biting my lips. >> one woman lost her lips. another was assaulted by her husband in front of her children. these abused women in papua new guinea, these women were in a video produced by child fund australia. members say 70% of women in papua, new guinea have been
victims of sexual assault and other forms of violence. child fund has an office in its capital. the group has been supporting needy children and last year it began a program to help abused women. >> what we are trying to do is giving support to the survivors of violence. second is what is said is raising awareness is creating an environment within the communities so that the violence reduces. >> reporter: this shelter receives support from child fund. it's a place for women who runaway from abusive men. when we visited last month, five women and their children were taking shelter.
each woman is given her own room and stays at the facility from 4 to 6 weeks. during that time, they prepare to return to society and start the process of healing. >> we take care of them. we feed them. they are provided counselling by the staff that is here, very capable staff that is here. they are provided with medical care. we have some vocational training that we try to get them involved in. >> jenny is from a mountainous area. she arrived at the facility at the end of may with her two children. she says she could no longer put up with her common-law husband's violent behavior. >>translator: my husband beat me and cut my fingers with a knife. he also slashed my head. >> reporter: economic growth has
given people more spending power. some use their money on drugs and alcohol. experts say that fuels more abuse against women. she is taking legal action so she can live separately from her partner, but she says she isn't sure she can raise two children on her own. >>translator: i need to live apart from my partner, but i need money to raise my kids. i'm a housewife without a job. >> reporter: papua new guinea's leaders have started to take action. the government has passed a law to protect abused women. community leaders say all of society need to pull together to keep women safe.
the ferry sank leaving 11 people missing. no progress has been reported since a body was discovered on june 24th. residents insist that a proposed investigate if team be allowed to look into the disaster and indict those involved in the disaster. they have circulated a petition and they are putting pressure on parliament. the support rate has declined sharply and she has also failed to appoint a new prime minister. the new prime minister had offered to step down to take responsibility. she has not been able to keep a hold on the situation in the face of public frustration.
a nuclear plant in southwestern japan is one step closer to restarting two reactors. its safety measures have been approved by the country's nuclear regulator. all the reactors in japan were idled after the 2011 disaster. this could mean a return of the industry. as reported, there are still safety concerns that need to be addressed. >> reporter: japan's nuclear regulation authority or nra has released its decision on two reactors in the prefecture. the sendai nuclear power plant operated by kyushu power company and confirmed the plant has met the new safety standard. >> translator: we have thoroughly examined measures to tackle severe accidents and natural disasters to ensure safety. i believe we have made a major change. all of japan's 48 reactors are off line.
three years ago an earthquake and tsunami damaged the power plant. it was a catalyst for the reform of the industry's safety standards. the nra has been conducting screenings based on strict new rules which went into effect last year. the focus is how earthquake resistant the facilities are. the nra wants to know the maximum magnitude of possible earthquakes and tsunami. the operator of the sendai plant set higher estimates for tremors and waves and the nra gave priority to the plant saying those estimates were appropriate. workers at the plant are hurrying to finish all upgrades. they have built 10 meter high
walls to protect equipment from tsunami break water and they installed pipes that can withstand tremors. >>translator: we will complete the task quickly so the plant's operations can be resumed as soon as possible. >> reporter: the nra approved the upgraded design and safety features of the sendai plant at the wednesday meeting. the decision was welcomed by the government. >>translator: we would like to push forward restarting the reactors with the conclusion of the safety screening and understanding of local people. >> reporter: but not everyone was understanding. many are making their voices heard over the safety concerns. many people are rallying in front of the building where nra's office is located.
many people are rallying where the office is located. they are yelling and holding signs to show their discontent toward the decision. protesters say the screening of the plant was fast and sloppy and that the evacuation plan for residents is insufficient. people on the other side are split over the decision. >>translator: i don't want it to be restarted. i'm concerned about the safety of the next generation. >> translator: i agree with the restart, because it is necessary for us. some locals benefit from it. >> reporter: the nra's decision isn't final. the regulator will take a month to collect comments from the public. then they will look for approval from local municipalities. there are still on site
operational checks to be done. the sendai plant faces many challenges in regaining trust of those who are cautious about the safety of the nuclear energy. >> crews at the fukushima daichi nuclear plant are carrying out decommissioning work that will last for decades. managers at the planting are stepping up efforts to improve their employees' long-term working environment but they are facing many obstacles. nhk went for an inside look on this edition of "nuclear watch." >> reporter: cleaning up fukushima daiichi is a big job. workers are removing radioactive contamination and decommissioning damaged reactors at the same time. the area around the crippled buildings still had high levels of radiation. people here work in shifts and take breaks every few hours.
this is the resting place for workers. so whenever workers finish their works or they wait for another works, they spend the time here. relaxing, maybe have a cup of tea, water, or read a magazine. as many as 6,000 workers come to the site every day. their schedules are designed to minimize radiation exposure. tepco officials explain most of the people here are employees of subcontracting companies. it means the utility is not directly responsible for their safety. but tepco officials have started taking measures to improve conditions at the plant. >> translator: we consider improving the working
environment to be a top priority. >> reporter: they are constructing a new facility for workers. the building will have a dining space where hot meals will be served. it will also have devices people can use to check their internal radiation exposure. it's not just spaces for breaks that are getting improvements. an example is this vehicle repair factory. nothing like it existed here before it was built. that worried many workers. the vehicles here can't leave because they may be contaminated so if one broke down or needed repairs, there was no way to fix it. now that problem has been solved. >> translator: insuring worker safety is essential for safe and speedy decommissioning. >> reporter: but experts say more needs to be done to ensure the safety of workers.
>> translator: at fukushima daiichi, the task of checking workers' health is handled by the companies that hire them but what we need is a centralized system of checking the health of all workers. >> reporter: osaka says the japanese government needs to establish a system for making sure the workers are healthy. there are other issues to consider. when workers finish a shift, they are required to take off their protective gear, their clothing and equipment is treated as contaminated waste. tepco is now constructing an incineration facility to deal with it. but the manager overseeing the project says he's not sure when it will be ready. >> translator: all of us have to
stop working right when our shifts end to minimize radiation exposure. it's not like a normal construction site. >> reporter: he says under these conditions, it's hard to stay on schedule. tepco has a lot riding on the safety of the plants' workers. their health and well being is critical to the success of the decommissioning project. nhk world, fukushima daiichi. growing tension in iraq has pushed up crude oil prices and drivers in japan are paying more for gasoline, gas prices at the pump rose for the 12th straight week. the latest data from the oil information center shows that the average price of regular gas per liter was 1.69 per yen.
the officials predict the trend will be released and prices are likely to fall next week. they say crude oil prices have recently started to show a declining trend and some wholesalers are beginning to lower their prices. potentially good news for sushi lovers. a japanese trading house hand a group of researchers have teamed up to cultivate bluefin tuna, a highly valued fish whose catches are falling. they are now set to launch a new facility to expand its output. >> officials agreed to set up a new center for the hatched fish. the facility will handle the entire farming process starting from artificial incubation to breeding. it will start it's operation as early as may next year. the aim is to produce 300,000 fish annually and in roughly
about 2% of the kwauchbquantity consumed in japan. s. >> >> the university succeeded in cultivating bluefin tuna from eggs back in 2002. it started commercialization four years ago. but nearly half of the hatched fish couldn't survive long distance transportation to a farming center. the international scientific committee for tuna and tuna-like species in the pacific ocean say catches of bluefin tuna in the pacific are declining to about half of what it was in 2005.
prime minister shinzo abe says he will bolster health care programs for people affected by 2011 earthquake and tsunami. abe inspected public housing for those hit by the disaster in the prefecture. he has been making monthly visits to the affected area. people who moved in the homes said many live alone. they asked for programs that helped them engage in the community. >> translator: i realize the need to step up programs for the physical and mental health of people here. >> abe asked officials to draw
up a plan to increase the number of advisers and counselors. he also inspected a business that grows rice and vegetables. he was briefed how workers removed salt from the soil to restore cultivation after the tsunami. he tried his hand at packing some of the produce. typhoon ramasun has left a path of destruction in the philippines. >> yes, gene, the storm system came on shore, through the evening hours trapped over land maintaining its typhoon strength. those winds and waves really pushed onshore and caused some damage here. then pushing over the manilla bay region. we also have some photos where those winds and waves really pushed onshore causing some damage to some boats here.
we also have a video out of manilla, let's go ahead and roll that. right along the immediate coastline you can also see these high winds continuing to push onshore. 150,000 people had to be evacuated ahead of this storm system. there has been reports of deaths at this time, numerous downed trees across the city. actually in manilla, about 85% of the city at one point was without power. cleanup efforts are in place at this time. and the good news, this storm system is now moving away from these areas out here as those recovery efforts continue to be put in place. but as we take a look at the winds, this is still a very potent storm system, now up to 144, gusting to 198 kilometers per hour pushing out towards hainan. it's expected to make landfall by friday afternoon into the evening hours there in southern china as a very strong typhoon.
so definitely want to be watching out for this if you are here. it's not just the winds, but the rainfall, some areas could see over 300 millimeters of precipitation once this storm comes onshore. i do also want to point something else out here on the map. i know we are still recovering ramussun, but another tropical depression as formed and this could impact the philippines by next week. we want to keep a close eye on that area down there. meanwhile heavy rainfall still taking place across central eastern portions of china, in the next 24 hours, some areas could see an additional 150 millimeters of rain, not associated with the typhoon, but associated with the rainy season front out here. even looking at some showers and thunderstorms popping up in central northern portions of japan as well. we're going to see some thunderstorms possibly especially in the afternoon to evening hours. let's take a look at the americas now where we are continuing to watch high pressure dive in from the north, ushering in some cool air out here, temps feeling fall like across the midwest.
the leading edge of that, some thunderstorms continuing to flare up, even flash flood warnings are in place across the new england states here as that front does push off the eastern seaboard, back towards the west, also seeing severe thunderstorms in the northern portion of texas, oklahoma and even towards kansas. you culled could be seeing some damaging winds and even large hail. here's your temperature on your wednesday, chicago with a high of 19, overnight lows could be getting down into the low teens. south of that cold front i mentioned, take a look at this, this is hot and steamy in houston, 34 over towards miami at 32 on wednesday. the iberian peninsula, heat warnings in place there into spain. temps could be rising as high as 38 to 39 degrees in madrid. back to the east, you're dealing with the severe weather, thunderstorms flaring up across much of the balkan peninsula. here's the extended outlook.
chinese fans of japanese culture have plenty to prows at the annual japanese book fair. the annual show is hosting a record 570 companies and organizations from 31 down t 1 and regions. organizers are expecting a million visitors during the week-long fair. >> translator: i look forward to seeing even more exhibits next year. >> japanese business and government look at hong kong as a gateway for cultural works to